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Stela Aguiar Carneiro Ferreira


Laura Mulvey (1975) prominently explores the male gaze in her article Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema, criticizing its implications in traditional narrative cinema and how the representation of women on-screen is regarded as an object-of-desire. By analysing Céline Sciamma’s Portrait of a Lady on Fire (2019), the absence of male subjects allows for a deeper interpretation on female subjectivity and gaze. Considering the Matrix, a psychoanalytic theory conceived by Bracha L. Ettinger, which encompasses concepts beyond Freudian perspective on femininity, is it possible to investigate another type of gaze in Portrait of a Lady on Fire? In times such as our own, can these definitions provide an alternative foundation to the cinematic apparatus itself?